What should I do if arrested? | A criminal lawyers perspective.

Jacksonville Criminal Lawyer

Jacksonville Lawyer Cynthia Veintemillas

Jacksonville Lawyer Cynthia Veintemillas with 20 Miles Law, PLLC 904.564.2525

What should you do if you are arrested is a great question, often asked when it is too late. Please read below about the potential harm in pleading guilt or no contest without the help of a lawyer. Through out the United States similar circumstances to those described below will apply.

Jacksonville Lawyer, is a practicing lawyer in Jacksonville, Florida at the law firm 20 Miles Law, PLLC. The following article was taken from her site to educate the public. The original article has been edited but can be found at 20mileslaw.com.  Cynthia’s office 20 Miles Law can be reached at 904.564.2525

If you are arrested in Jacksonville, you will probably go to court in Duval County.  Regardless of where you are arrested in Florida, to get out of jail, you must either plead guilty or no contest to the crime, or you are given bond or ROR (released on your own recognizance).

If you are arrested in Florida, you will be required to go to court within 24 hours of your Florida arrest.  This is called first appearance court.  Jacksonville first appearance court is held in courtroom J-1 at the Duval County jail.  In Jacksonville first appearance court, the prosecutor will either set a bond in the Jacksonville criminal case or the prosecutor will offer a plea deal.  If you were offered a plea deal in first appearance court, it is likely the arrest was for a misdemeanor.  If you do not accept the plea offer for the arrest, you will typically be given a bond.  A bond is the amount of money that you must pay in order to get out of jail.  Depending on the criminal charge and your Florida criminal record, the Duval County judge may release you own recognizance (ROR).  If you are released on your own recognizance in Jacksonville, you will be released from the Duval County jail without paying any money for your bond.


In many Florida misdemeanor cases, people will be offered plea deals immediately after an arrest, and take the deal in order to get out of jail as soon as possible.  As a Jacksonville criminal defense attorney, Cynthia has seen too many Florida criminal defendants plead guilty or no contest when they were not represented by a lawyer in Jacksonville.  The Jacksonville criminal defendant does not understand his or her rights when pleading guilty or no contest to a Florida crime in first appearance court, because he or she did not have the help of a criminal lawyer.  Many people plead no contest or guilty to a Florida crime without talking to a criminal defense attorney first to understand the consequences.

If you pled guilty or no contest to a Florida crime after being arrested in Jacksonville, you should talk to a local Jacksonville criminal lawyer immediately.  It is critical to the outcome of your Florida criminal case and your future to act fast when it come to withdrawing a plea in a Florida criminal case.  If you have pled guilty or no contest in Jacksonville, you may be able to withdrawal your guilty or no contest plea, but there is a time limit to withdraw a Jacksonville plea.  If you want to withdraw you plea to a Florida crime, you must be do so within thirty (30) days of the sentence being entered pursuant to Florida Rule of Criminal Procedure 3.170(l).


If you are charged with a crime in Jacksonville, you should not make decisions without talking to a Jacksonville Florida Attorney with experience withdrawing pleas in Jacksonville criminal cases.  Entering a guilty or no contest plea in a Florida criminal case is the ultimate decision that you can make in your case.  A guilty or no contest plea to a Florida crime will end your case, so you need to talk to a Jacksonville criminal lawyer about it before doing so.  If you did plea guilty to a crime in Jacksonville, in some cases, you can plead guilty and still clear your Florida criminal record if you fill certain requirements.  There are crimes that cannot be sealed in Florida, so talk to a Jacksonville record sealing lawyer.

As a Jacksonville criminal defense attorney, Cynthia says, people will often ask how they can appeal their Jacksonville criminal case.  In many Jacksonville criminal cases, people are not looking for an appeal.  Instead of a Florida criminal appeal, the person may want to withdraw the guilty plea or no contest plea.  A criminal lawyer can help with this.  If you entered a guilty or no contest plea to a crime in Jacksonville, talk to a lawyer in Jacksonville, Florida that can help you understand your options.  If you have been arrested in Florida or have a Florida criminal case pending, call a criminal defense attorney immediately.

Again: Jacksonville Lawyer, is a practicing lawyer in Jacksonville, Florida at the law firm 20 Miles Law, PLLC. This article was taken from her site to educate the public. The original article has been edited but can be found at 20mileslaw.com.  Cynthia’s office 20 Miles Law can be reached at 904.564.2525

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